Announcement | October 03, 2013 18:52

BREAKING: Chess.com to acquire ChessVibes

BREAKING: Chess.com to acquire ChessVibes

Amsterdam, October 3rd, 2013 — Chess.com today announced it has signed a definitive agreement to acquire ChessVibes.com, the leading website for chess news. The agreement combines the strengths of Chess.com, the number #1 online chess community with almost 8 million members, and ChessVibes, known for its quality coverage of top tournaments. Peter Doggers, owner and CEO of ChessVibes, will join Chess.com full-time, effective immediately.

“Peter has done a fantastic job with top-notch chess coverage,” said Erik Allebest, CEO of Chess.com. “Chess.com and ChessVibes share a passion for serving our members, and while we have focused on playing and learning tools, ChessVibes is synonymous with quality chess journalism. We look forward to bringing the two companies together to provide the best service to chess fans of all levels.”

“By teaming up with the leading global chess platform, ChessVibes is able to leverage Chess.com's impressive userbase and resources to enhance its presence and impact a larger audience,” said Peter Doggers, owner/CEO of ChessVibes. “I am pleased to be able to work as a chess journalist on the biggest chess website around.”

ChessVibes.com will continue to exist for several months while its archive of content is transferred to Chess.com. ChessVibes' two digital, subscription based magazines - ChessVibes Openings (CVO) and ChessVibes Training (CVT) – as well as many of the regular content contributors to ChessVibes.com will “find new homes” contributing to Chess.com's newly launched Master's Bulletin (the potential replacement for CVO and CVT) as well as contributions to Articles and Courses. Subscribers to CVO and CVT will be compensated in the form of Chess.com Premium Memberships and/or subscriptions to Chess.com's Master's Bulletin.

Peter Doggers, owner/CEO of ChessVibes will start working full time for Chess.com. Together with Mike Klein, Co-Director of Content, and Daniel Rensch, Vice President of Content & Professional Relations, he will focus on content creation, product and content management, as well as special projects and tasks related to marketing & professional relations. One of his first official projects for Chess.com will be the coverage of the Anand-Carlsen World Championship match in November in Chennai, India.

About

Chess.com is the #1 online chess community with almost 8 million members from around the world. Chess.com provides a safe and enjoyable environment where chess players of all skill levels can learn, play, and enjoy the game together. Chess.com was launched in 2007.

ChessVibes.com is the #1 website for chess news and stories. ChessVibes provides daily chess news, videos, columns, reviews, cartoons, puzzles and blogs. It started on February 6th, 2006 as a personal blog. Owner and founder Peter Doggers renamed it “ChessVibes” on January 1st, 2007.


That was the official press release, to which I will add a few personal remarks.

ChessVibes has been just wonderful. I'll never forget the day (and date: 6 February 2006) I launched a blog at blogspot, and started posting a few of my games. Soon after, I started writing about chess news, I moved to the Content Management System Wordpress. I started writing in English, alongside Dutch. I started recording videos from the press room in Wijk aan Zee, which was a huge success. I started travelling the world, visiting top events from Mexico City to Shanghai and from Baku to Bilbao.

I quit my job, and started a company. That was different. I managed to make deals with tournament organizers, I managed to find advertisers, and I started two magazines with a group of wonderful editors. I think we did a good job and provided excellent content in various ways.

Earlier this year, Chess.com approached me. They basically said: “We want to hire you. What does it take?” After months of talks, hundreds of emails and a few sleepless nights on my side, we finally came to an agreement. As Director of Content, much of my work will be similar to what I did for ChessVibes: covering top chess with reports and videos! 

It was not an easy decision to let go of my company, the thing I've created from scratch, which grew into one of the best chess websites around (disclaimer: I might not be 100% unbiased). But I decided to go for it, and I'm looking forward to keep on doing what I did, but embedded in a great team of professionals, with more resources, and a bigger audience.

Please join me! Do create a free account, which not only gives you the opportunity to play chess absolutely for free from your browser or your phone or tablet, but it also allows you to easily find my reports on Chess.com and comment on them!

ChessVibes will stay online for at least a few more months, but in the long run you'll be able to find the content on Chess.com. (I'm very happy that José Diaz and Yochanan have agreed to continue posting their studies and cartoons on Chess.com!) We have already sent an email to our subscribers regarding our magazines. If you're a subscriber and you're reading this: I want to make clear that nobody has the intention to take advantage you; we will reimburse or offer an excellent alternative subscription at Chess.com to you!

Before I give you the opportunity to ask questions (which I'll try to respond to quickly!), let me thank a few people: Allard Hoogland of New in Chess for being my main advertiser from the very start, Edwin Woudt for helping me out in the first few, important years in Wijk aan Zee, Arne Moll for being the best columnist I know, Merijn van Delft and Robert Ris, for providing CVO for an amazing 248 weeks in a row, and also 127 CVTs now, and my other editors, Thomas Willemze (first year CVT), Arthur van de Oudeweetering (last 1.5 years of CVT), Anish Giri (CVT columnist during the first 20 months of CVT), Gawain Jones, Erwin l'Ami, Robin van Kampen and Irina Krush (columnists since the start of this year), Yochanan Afek for providing hundreds of endgame studies over the years, José Diaz for his brilliant cartoons, Colin McGourty for some great articles and proofreading, John Saunders for proofreading, Thomas Richter for a few articles here and hundreds of comments that often were the engine of lengthy discussions below the articles, Macauley Peterson, who provided invaluable help in producing videos at many tournaments and last but not least Gilbert Vrancken, who did all the hard (programming) work behind the scenes during the last two years, including the move from Wordpress to Drupal. Many thanks to all!!

For questions you can use the comments section below or email me privately.

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Peter Doggers's picture
Author: Peter Doggers

Founder and editor-in-chief of ChessVibes.com, Peter is responsible for most of the chess news and tournament reports. Often visiting top events, he also provides photos and videos for the site. He's a 1.e4 player himself, likes Thai food and the Stones.

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Comments

nk's picture

Congratulations Peter!

Desmond Hume's picture

I hope this is profitable for both sides. Although, I have to admit, playing and watching games on chess.com is near impossible for stronger players. The "live arena" format is horrible. ICC is still the best place to play and watch broadcasts.

Daniel Rensch's picture

Don't disagree with you, even as an owner of Chess.com ;-) BUT you should know that we haven't even been *trying* to relay games yet... nor have we really had the *professional community* on our site enough to develop more in this (live) area...

BUT that is all changing! This will be completely different in 1 year's time!

Danny

Anonymous's picture

Congratulations Daniel. I hope it all works out well for you. I also hope that you pay much closer attention and act swiftly upon the hatred and false accusations continuously levelled at Magnus Carlsen by the likes of Thomas Oliver and S3 as seen on countless occasions here by those who regular follow the excellent work done by Peter. They have been nothing short of disgraceful and should of been banned from here a long time ago. Everyone is entitled to their opinion of course but Thomas Oliver and S3 have repeatedly gone too far with their constant diatribe towards Magnus Carlsen, who in my opinion is a good natured guy, who just happens to be a fantastic chess player.

anonymous's picture

No need to ban them, they are just good (un)wholesome entertainment. Just take their obnoxious trolling, scandal-mongering, spin-doctoring, quote fabricating and sophistry plying ways with a light heart, and, remember, they are just being more objective about Carlsen than the rest of us :-)

Adarsh Saji's picture

You are right.

Peter Doggers's picture

Nonsense, the only reason to ban people is if they continuously violate our terms, such as swearing, totally irrelavent stuff, hyperlinks, etc. All other comments fall under the "free speech" assumption. "Don't like it, leave this place", has always been my approach.

Anonymous's picture

So Peter feels that slagging off Magnus Carlsen with a constant stream of lies and hatred as seen by all of us here by S3 and Thomas Oliver for some time is okay. Good luck Daniel :)

Frits Fritschy's picture

"as seen by all of us here": it's quite cowardly to hide in a group and not speak for yourself. Even more so when you do so anonymously.
I take it that you never really contributed to this site. (I can't check that; there are a many anonymouses here - I once suggested to give your lot numbers.)
Even when I hate good-for-nothing cowards like you, I would protest against you being banned. But I really hope anonymity will be banned under the new ownership. Guys like you won't dare anymore to ruin other peoples pleasure with the venom you're spreading. Good riddance.
(signed with my real name)

Anonymous's picture

It's only a question of good comments or bad comments, I'm not interested in the real name of S3 even though I know it, and I don't agree with Thomas Oliver's comments on Carlsen if he posts them as Anonymous either.

Frits Fritschy's picture

Now I don't know if you are the same anonymous I reacted upon. If you are the same, you are stating that you want to ban people because you disagree or don't like the quality of someone's comment. I didn't like the previous comment at all, but should the writer be banned? Not for my sake.
I don't care too much about most people's name here; I probably don't know them and will never meet them. But I know some of my friends and clubmates read this, so I try to write comments I won't be ashamed of. That would work the same way for others here, except for the ones without friends - which is so sad that I wouldn't bother about it.

Anonymous's picture

Love your approach, Peter! Free speech is sacred. Thanks for your thoughts.

Morley's picture

A nice interface for live relay would be great. Would make me a paying member of chess.com again. Well, that and a Windows Phone app!

Peter Grønborg's picture

Looking forward to that, Danny!
You rock! Love your vids.
Chess.com looks to be improving further and further.

Adarsh Saji's picture

Dear Daniel,

I am one of your premium member, But what I noticed the live games regarding the top tournaments are not good. It is so nice to watch ICC site for this. Expect beautiful and watchable live stream from your side.

Peter Doggers's picture

True. Chess.com isn't relaying games of top events yet. But I will convince them! wink

Checking Dubs's picture

Third.

Niima's picture

Good luck Peter. Somewhat sad to see ChessVibes disappear, but I understand that it was the right move for you. Will follow you on Chess.com.

Big Alex's picture

I thought Chessbase was the leading website for chess news.

Anyway it seems to be a nice joint venture!

Hanseman's picture

Congrats Peter! Way to go!!!

Hanseman's picture

wow man wat ontzettend cool! Nogmaals big congratz en #respect!

JanisNisii's picture

Good Luck on your new adventure, Peter, I'm sure you will do very well.
As for chess.com, I can only find thing when I search them on the web (and I know they must be there) or I'm given a direct link. Not easy to access contents from the home page, not easy to surf that place. Not for me at least. Hope that will change.

Peter Doggers's picture

It's a bit like Facebook: when you go there while logged in, there's a "real" homepage. Btw the news can be reaches at www.Chess.com/news.

Arno's picture

Peter, bedankt voor alle jaren topklasse reporting, van harte gefeliciteerd en veel succes!

Sad Day for Chess's picture

It is a sad day for chess news websited. Chess Vibes was my preferred source for chess news (over Chessbase). However, chess.com caters to the "masses" of casual players (i.e., weak and non-tournament) and its layout and playing interface are hideously bad. For your sake, Peter, I hope you made a good chuck of money, and I have no doubt that you will make chess.com better (as it really is impossible for make it any worse).

Ivanov's picture

Agreed with Big Alex, Chessvibes is far from being the top news site (Chessbase, Chesspro, Chessdom, etc), but it is sad that it is killed like that. Why not continue cross posting reports here?

Daniel Rensch's picture

On behalf of Chess.com I'd just like to say what a huge step forward I believe this is for our company. We have admired and envied the work of Peter Doggers of ChessVibes for years! To have him joining our team is nothing short of amazing!

Cannot wait to work alongside Peter everyday! I hope all fans of ChessVibes will follow Peter's work just as closely on Chess.com :-)

Danny

CluoroFluoroCarbon's picture

Chess.com is about to become not only the biggest chess site in the world, but also the best.

Well done to all involved.

ETT's picture

Congratulations Peter, but I am unhappy. This just seems wrong.

Grromit 's picture

This is sad for two reasons. One, that a professional chess site has been integrated into a mass casual gaming chess site. Secondly, I hope this merger is not advance warning of a possible scenario where professional chess, at least as a viable business activity, is shrinking and that this event, is just the beginning of further consolidation amongst its players.

jussu's picture

Mm... okay. I hope Peter made a big chunk of money from the deal. Farewell CV.

Anonymous's picture

The chess.com forums are easily as decadent as the worst of ChessBomb. A true tragedy, unsurprisingly caused by money.

Coco Loco's picture

Congratulations, Peter! And even bigger congratulations to chess.com - you are making a great investment that will attract the most dedicated English-speaking chess players on the planet! However, please do not, EVER, dumb down the chess content, or we'll all leave! :-)

eugeniusjr's picture

I really liked having two different views of the news (one from CV, one from chess.com). I assume the price was right, and such a thing would have to happen eventually, but I think it would be better for chess if chessvibes.com remained independent.

Nothing against chess.com. I have played there for several years and I think they are awesome for the chess world (yes, better than ICC) and a good company overall.

Anonymous's picture

Calling yourself the nr.1 is pretty awesome.
Sometimes it even works.

Robert Doggers's picture

Proud of my brother, one of the few on earth who made a hobby into full time job. The best way to guarantee quality is passion and hard work. Whatever they paid for CV, it was a bargain! Gogogo!

Bartleby's picture

Two of my three top chess sites go together. Makes sense. Both provided a no-nonsense approach in their field, got the details right, were beacons of reliabilty in a world of flash and silverlight issues, and free. Thanks so far and keep up the good work.

Jan's picture

This is life: you get opportunities, you think, you take a chance...don't look back..go for it! Well done so far..keep it up!

Anonymous's picture

Will chess.com have the same censorship then?

Anonymous's picture

Can we no longer troll as "Anonymous" now :( :)

Septimus's picture

Sad to see chessvibes be swallowed up. This is hands down the best chess website.

Septimus's picture

On a related note, I foresee members paying for everything, including posting comments. CV always has the right price, i.e. FREE!

Anonymous's picture

True. The paying thing is a big bummer.
Chessbase will be the true number one then. Free information.

NakaFan's picture

I'm not sure if i can congratulate Peter, since Chess.com has a horrible reputation in terms of human ressources.
What was nice with CV was this freedom of speech and the causal way to report the chess news, and chess.com is heavily moderating his forum.
It all depends of the wage and the conditions. Only time will tell. Good luck Peter.

PP (nl)'s picture

I think I was one of your first followers. Since I discovered your site I always started my following if chess events and chess news starting at your site. In most cases I did not have to search further.

You have really created something marvelous over the years and you can and should be proud.

Thank you for all these years and I hope this new step for you is bringing the coverage of chess news to an even higher level.

Andrew's picture

This is fantastic. Congratualtions Mr. Doggers! I have wanted high quality chess coverage on chess.com for a while and because it usually lacked such I would hop over to chessvibes for my news. This seems like a logical marriage of the two platforms and I think Mr. Doggers is owed what I hope is the good fortune that has been bestowed on him.

Anonymous's picture

Noooo... Chess.com is evil :(

Henk-Jan Visser's picture

Heel veel succes en plezier Peter, bij deze nieuwe stap! En je mag trots zijn op wat je hebt neergezet in de afgelopen jaren!

Anonymous's picture

I don't like Chess.com
It's sad to see ChessVibes go for that!

Bronkenstein's picture

Be it Chess.com or Chessvibes, just keep on doing excellent work you did here.

Best wishes with your new job! =)

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